Events, Exclusive, Featured, Interviews | Hardwell Interview (FNT Exclusive) + Lavo Recap

Posted by on July 21, 2012

Thursday I had the opportunity to sit down with Hardwell before his show and chat with him about his first show, touring as a teenager, his collabs with Tiesto and Porter Robinson, the importance of labels and much more. The superstar DJ / producer from Breda, Holland is now a 10 year veteran of the dance music scene even though he is just 24. He signed his first record deal at the age of 14 and started playing clubs in Holland around that time. You are all familiar with his recent singles “Spaceman (Original + Vocal)” and “Kontiki“, as well as his techy single “Three Tringles” on Toolroom Records and his huge upcoming single “How We Do” with Showtek. He premiered his remix of Example’s single “Say Nothing” that was incredible by the way (i somehow managed to not get a video of it, I apologize). He is a superstar playing main stage at all of the biggest festivals all over the world from Ultra to Tomorrowland next weekend to EDC and many more.

His set at Lavo was clinical — a lesson on how to be precise with your mixing, moving between songs like clockwork with a quality and varied track selection. He played crowd pleasers like Otto Knows – Million Voices, “In My Mind“, “Silhouettes” and “Nicktim”. He also played a variety of tracks from his own label like Dannic – Tombo and Jordy Daz – OMG, as well as many selections from his already remarkable discography. He played and bootlegged a few Hip Hop records like DMX – Party Up (Up In Here), which got a great crowd reaction and made sense if you read to the end of the interview. Anyway read the beginning of the interview below and the rest after the jump.

FNT: Lets go back to the beginning when you first started DJing. Think back to your first gig, what was like, who was there and how nervous were you?

Hardwell: My first gig was when I was 12 years old and yea I was so nervous the day before I couldn’t sleep because I was really preparing this stuff and all this music. I can still remember the date, it was fun. On the first side, I was really nervous and on the second side on I was playing for my best friends so that made really comfortable, actually it was a really funny gig.

FNT: You had to tour with your parents until you were 18 because you couldn’t enter the clubs; how strict were they with your schooling and your schedule.

Hardwell: School was the most important thing at that point and after that music because my parents really wanted me to finish high school, and I did. At that age I really had a tight schedule, I think you need it at that point.

FNT: When you started it was hard to promote yourself as artist without the help of a label, but now with Soundcloud, Facebook, Twitter, blogs etc; do you think is as important or useful for a young, unknown artist to sign record deals right off the bat, especially since people don’t buy music anymore.

Hardwell: I think it is still important because big record labels are taking care of your whole artist brand, so to take it to the next level, it is not about Soundcloud or Youtube, of course you can grow your artist profile too through that, but social media is just to stay in touch with your fan base and your profile as an artist you still need a big label and the right people behind you to push your name to the next level to make your name a brand. So I think in the beginning of course Soundcloud and Youtube and Facebook are really important, but then again the big labels are still important too not only for selling music, but for the branding as well.


Events, Review | Tiesto at Lavo NY 6/6 Review

Posted by on June 8, 2012

To get to the point of even being inside Lavo NY last night was one hell of an adventure. It is a long story but I will try and keep it short. I had originally gone into New York to see Dada Life’s secret show. They booked a club that could not hold the 1500-2000 people they gave tickets to, not even half of those people, so the vast majority of the people who showed up over an hour in advance could not enter. Probably only 200-300 people were able to attend this free, secret show. I got in line at 6:45 for the 8pm show and was nowhere close to getting in. Dada Life did not do this one right at all and really should have thought a lot more carefully about the club they booked.

Four hours later, after many frantic emails to the man Adam at Plexi PR to get last minute press passes, about a mile or two of walking around the city, and a change of attire from Dada Life appropriate clothing to ritzy NYC night club appropriate clothing, me and my two friends were able to get in after some less than stellar door management. Once inside, I was able to view the grand splendor of Lavo with a large back display, though it was mostly blocked by VIPs, bottles of champagne and champagne flowing like water, girls looking like they just got off the runway and guys looking like they would make it rain Benjamins if the time came. More of the recap after the jump.